Category Archives: Everything Alcohol

Kenzo Winery (Napa Valley)

Kenzo Estate Winery – Napa Valley

Out of all the choices, my parents were adamant about visiting this winery because they can give the entire tour in Japanese lol. But honestly, this was an impressive tour and our family had the tour guide all to ourselves. The tour experience was very intimate, casual, and informative.

Kenzo wines are up and coming high end wines. It’s still rare to see them at most restaurants and they are relatively on the pricey side. About this Tsujimoto Kenzo… let me just say that he is quite gangster. Not only is he a successful business man as the CEO of Capcom, but he is also a ridiculous connoisseur of wines. Most people would go to their local liquor store to get a bottle of wine on sale for $7. Not for Mr. Kenzo. You know what he did? He just went “screw these wines on the market! I’ll just get all the experts together and make my own good shit!” and went on to make his own winery in Napa Valley. One of the most important people in the gaming industry with your very own wine label… Mr Kenzo, I look up to you as my role model.


The four wines currently out on the market.Image

Outside the lobby area. Looks like a nice place lunch.Image

Baby grapesImage

Tour guide explaining how gangster Mr. Kenzo is.Image

The Merlot grape batch with the lot number.Image

These vines are still very young.Image

Primary FermentationImage

Olive Tree: He makes his own olive oil on the side.Image

Primary FermentationImage

I believe this equipment presses on the grapes after the fermentation to get more juice out.Image

The humidity and climate controlled caveImage

Where all the barrels are keptImage

“M” means Medium toasted barrel.Image

“M+” means the barrel is highly toasted.

My future home will have a cave with barrels of wine like this.Image

Wine tasting roomImage

The base of the glass is labeled with the name of the wine. Naturally, this is when the purchase order form comes out if you want to enjoy it in your hotel room.Image

Awesome scenery to enjoy wine.Image

That concluded the Kenzo Winery. Couple others we visited below.

Robert Mondavi WineryImage

Opus One Winery (if you never had it, try it… so awesome)ImageImage-Chef Snak


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Posted by on July 21, 2012 in Chef Snak, Everything Alcohol


Homebrew Beer: Part 3

Homebrew Beer: Part 3
Secondary Fermentation

They say this is an optional process, but in my opinion very critical if you want a smoother beer with better flavor and less sediments. Trust, it’s worth the time and additional effort.

Let’s begin.

Start by sanitizing your glass Carboy, siphon, and all your equipment. Remember everything that the beer touches at this point needs to be sanitized. You will siphon the beer out of your primary fermentation bucket to this glass Carboy.

Siphoning the beer from Primary Fermenation Bucket to the Carboy. IMPORTANT: Try not to splash the beer during this step! Unlike the primary fermentation when you want air in the mixture for the yeast, AIR = BAD during this step. You will lose some carbonation and your beer will be flat.

Isn’t this FUN!!! lol

Thank you roomie for taking photos while I’m trying not to splash the beer

Alrite! That was easy. Put the Cap and Air Stopper on the Carboy and leave it for couple weeks. Sediments and yeast will settle on the bottom. Flavor will mature and alcohol will further develop now that we aggravated the yeast. Part 4 will be Bottling.

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Posted by on July 14, 2011 in Chef Snak, Everything Alcohol


Cocktail Hunt: Alibi Room

Cocktail Hunt: Alibi Room

LEFT: Blackberry Crusta -Brandy, fresh lemon and blackberries, Cointreau
Initial bite of the brandy but immediately covered by the sugar rim and orange liquor. Definitely had a strong distinct taste. Bitterness of the citrus and the blackberry tartness aftertaste. 8.0/10

RIGHT: Tribute – Scotch, Dubbonet Rouge, fresh orange, bitters
Surprisingly no bite. You get the bitterness of the orange and the smokiness and the sweetness of scotch and the orange liquor. Bitter and slightly sweet experience.  7.5/10
Dubbonet Rouge was unique to me. Bartender let me try it by itself. Rouge alone was really sweet, almost like plum wine (umeshu). Reminded me of raisins lol.

LEFT: Lemon Basil – Citrus infused vodka, sugar, fresh lemon and basil.
Light cocktail that tastes like lemonade with a hint of basil. Very refreshing drink that would be perfect for outdoors! 8.5/10

RIGHT: Goldrush – Bourbon, fresh lemon, honey
Initial sweet and sour flavor of the lemon and you’re immediately hit with the smokiness and sweetness of bourbon. You even get the hint of honey on the back of your throat (like how you do with honey tea). Simple yet unique, Like! 9.0/10

-Buzzin Snak


Homebrew Beer: Part 2

Homebrew Beer: Part 2
Making the Wort and Primary Fermentation

OK let’s get started.

You need a giant pot (above, aluminum 20 quart) and brew water (6 gallons of water to make 5 gallons of beer)

Start boiling water. Be careful with aluminum pots, make sure it’s clean and don’t scrub it prior to boiling.

Me being ridiculous and holding the Malt Extract.

When you start to see bubbles, turn off heat and dump in the extract. Above is powder malt extract.

I also had the liquid Malt Extract. Just dump everything in, and watch for boil overs.


Start the heat again and remove the stuff that floats on top.

Stir occasionally.

You may need to cover the pot to start the boil.

Once it starts boiling, put in the hops and boil for an hour.

This is now called a “Wort” – Beer without the alcohol and carbonation.
I didn’t take photos of the sanitation process (rather boring) but after you boil your wort, it is crucial to keep all your equipment sanitized. Any bacteria that gets in your brew will ruin in the entire batch during the fermentation phase.

Immediately cool the pot with the wort in a tub or sink. When the pot is cool to the touch, pour it in the primary fermentation bucket.

Place the cover and put on the air lock. Use vodka instead of water for sanitary reasons.
Thats all for Part 2! Now we wait 3-5 days and next is Secondary Fermentation.

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Posted by on June 10, 2011 in Chef Snak, Everything Alcohol


Homebrew Beer: Part 1

Homebrew Beer: Part 1

Decided to attempt a relatively easier (and happens to be one of my fav) brew for my first attempt; Hefeweizen!

Ingredients that make up the Hef.
Malt (dry and syrup shown above)
Bottled Water

Priming Sugar: You will use this prior to bottling (after the Secondary Fermentation that I will get into later)

Starting kit from Culver City Brewing Home Brewing Supply.
What you see is (from the left) Primary Fermentation Bucket, cleaning brushes, Iodophor (to sanitize equipment), Large metal spoon, small and big strainer, bottle caper, Auto-Siphon, Turkey Baster (to read the gravity of your beer), and a thermometer . Missing from the photo is a glass Carboy used for Secondary Fermentation and the Air lock and stopper for the bucket and carboy. I also had to purchase a large Brew Kettle (min 20 quarts) separately.
Read the instructions carefully and get ready to Brew!
Up next, Homebrew Beer Part 2: Making Wort and Primary Fermentation.

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Posted by on May 24, 2011 in Chef Snak, Everything Alcohol


Grape infused Vodka Martini

Grape Infused Vodka
Simple and beautiful

I tried many different vodkas for my cocktails and for my infusion experiments and I would say the the BEST vodka for your buck is Smirnoff Triple Distilled. Relatively cheap (<$20 a handle at Costco), you can find it at any store that his liquor, and tastes great! Don’t recommend Sky unless you like the ‘bite’ aftertaste of vodka. Yeah, occasionally you can treat yourself to the nicer Vodkas (Goose, Belvedere, etc.) and yea you’ll look hella ballin busting out the expensive bottles, but unless you’re just taking shots from the bottle, you’re going to mask most of the alcohol you’re spending big bucks on anyway. Don’t be stupid, stick with Smirnoff.

Experimented with asian grapes that I bought at 99 Ranch. Recommend these asian grapes – they were sweet, bursting with juice, and especially because it was a looot easier to remove the skin. For grape infusions, you want to remove the skin unless you want it bitter.

Infusion for a week gave it a wonderful grape scent and sweetness. Barely tasted the bite from the vodka by itself. Lots of the vodka gets soaked into the fruit, so give it a good squeeze before you toss the fruit (yeah, you don’t want to eat these.. you can try and you’ll know why)

Grape Infused Vodka + splash Sweet & Sour + lime juice + optional splash club soda + grape garnish.
Shaken and strained into martini glass. Enjoy!


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Posted by on April 26, 2011 in Chef Snak, Everything Alcohol